There are so many predictions and prognostications about where the media and online marketing are headed that it’s tough to really know what the landscape will look like in a few years. What we can count on is that it will be different from what it looks like today.

A recent survey conducted by the Pew Research Center for the People and the Press and the Project for Excellence in Journalism shows these key findings:

48 percent of national journalists say papers will appear in print for one to two more decades.

42 percent of national journalists think networks will continue nightly news show for under 10 years.

38 percent of local journalists believe networks will continue nightly news shows for 10 n 20 years.

37 percent of internet journalists say newspapers will print on paper for more than 20 years.


We Stand Up For You. Will You Stand Up For Us?

When you look at those numbers, you know that the way we currently get our information and entertainment is going to change pretty radically in the not-so-distant future. Ten to twenty years goes really fast, I’m here to tell ya. And I think those numbers may be optimistic.

At an international PR conference earlier this year, Duncan Wardle, VP Global PR Disney Parks & Resorts, stated that the newspaper industry has 3-to-5 years. The 6 p.m. news has less than that. Yikes. Better start rethinking your long-term strategy if you use those mediums for marketing your message. Disney believes the web is “just as important as TV” for kids and I think they’re right. Kudos to voiceofsandiego for already figuring it out!

And what the big money advertisers think is what matters. Because where the money goes, so goes the content. General Motors now allocates 25 percent of its marketing dollars to digital development. GM spends around $3 billion annually. You do the math. Every network is looking at those kinds of numbers and trying to figure out how they can remain a player over the next 10 n 20 years, which resources need investment, and which ones don’t.

Digital continues to grow for the advertising business and forward-looking PR firms. Overall in 2007, U.S. agencies grew 8.6 percent because of digital, with 26.8 percent growth for digital specialty agencies. Wow. And that’s in a not-so-great economy.

So, bringing it back around from the first post. If you are serious about growing your business and intend to have a real marketing strategy to help you do that, you must consider online. Every single Bailey Gardiner client has some component of online in its strategy. For some, it’s working on blogger outreach or creating a “stickier” web site that people want to explore. For others, it’s intensity and variety — changing banner ads in flash and rich media on a weekly basis. And for others, it’s developing a blog that engages their customers in a real and engaging manner. That’s the interesting thing about the internet. There’s something for everyone (including you and your customers).

Look at what your competition is doing. If you don’t think they’re doing it right, figure out how to do it better. Look at some companies you respect and see what they’re doing online. Take the best practices, and make it work for you. And keep in mind that there are plenty of good agencies and consultants out there to help you. You don’t have to walk this path alone (there’s my shameless plug for mine and every other good agency out there). Good luck!

—INDRA GARDINER

    This article relates to: Community

    Written by K Hernandez